The Real Reason Why Goku Is A Kid In Dragon Ball GT


Dragon Ball GT faced an uphill battle up to the coveted Dragon Ball Z series. Unlike DBZ, which was based on a popular manga, GT had no source material to draw from and had to create an original story. This made it very difficult to match DBZ's epic storyline and beloved characters.

GT also made the controversial decision to transform Goku back into a child, in hopes of refreshing fans' nostalgia for the early Dragon Ball. However, this gimmick might have worked better if it was ended early on rather than continuing throughout the series.

Dragon Ball (Credit: Akira Toriyama)

Relying too much on nostalgia instead of building its own identity could hurt GT.

Finally, the series introduced other plot devices to remind fans of the original Dragon Ball, but then they were discarded very rapidly. Developing those storylines further could have given GT more depth and opened up new possibilities.

Dragon Ball (Credit: Akira Toriyama)

If GT had focused less on nostalgia and been more ambitious with its ideas, perhaps it could have not only equaled the greatness of DBZ, but even surpassed it.

Dragon Ball GT's controversial decision

Dragon Ball GT introduced Emperor Pilaf, the foolish villain of early Dragon Ball who wished to accidentally turn Goku back into a child by using the mysterious Black Star Dragon Balls. This transformed the mighty hero into a small child biologically the same age as his grandson Pan.

Dragon Ball (Credit: Akira Toriyama)

Goku being a kid again was intended to recreate the atmosphere of the early Dragon Ball adventures, as Goku, Pan, and Trunks blast off into space to find the scattered Black Star Dragon Balls before the Earth is destroyed.

Even when Goku briefly regains his adult form as Super Saiyan 4, he still remains a child for most of GT.

The writers probably hoped that this plot twist would spark nostalgia and be a fun return to form. Unfortunately, fans were very unhappy with the ending of Goku's evolution as an icon.

Dragon Ball (Credit: Akira Toriyama)

This regression made no sense and was an unpopular gimmick. However, it might have been better if Kid Goku had stuck around for a while before turning old again.

How adding the Z Fighters and introducing a nameable villain could have improved the series

Dragon Ball GT could have fixed its most glaring flaw – Kid Goku – early on by incorporating more of the classic Z Fighters. Since Goku, Pan, and Trunks were in space chasing the dangerous Black Star Dragon Balls, his old allies like Yamcha, Tien, and Krillin could search for Earth's regular Dragon Balls.

Dragon Ball (Credit: Akira Toriyama)

Once gathered, they could wish for Goku to grow back into adulthood faster. This would have the dual effect of quickly resolving the unpopular Kid Goku storyline while also giving fan-favorite characters more screen time.

Their quest will spark nostalgia for the adventures of the original Dragon Ball gang.

Additionally, GT missed the opportunity to introduce a nameable villain who would have strongly recalled Demon King Piccolo from early Dragon Ball.

Dragon Ball (Credit: Akira Toriyama)

Between a rapidly aging Goku and a new rogue Namek as the antagonist, GT could have done a better job of involving throwbacks without derailing itself.

Solve Kid Goku quickly and create a unique mix of comedy

With Kid Goku resolved early on, GT could have easily transitioned into the Baby Saga. This more action-oriented story would have felt at home with the scope and stakes of DBZ.

From there, GT found opportunities to mix storytelling styles – mixing some of the old comedy like early Dragon Ball with high-stakes drama for a fresh take.

Dragon Ball Creator Announces Ultimate Hero More Powerful Than Goku or VegetaDragon Ball Creator Announces Ultimate Hero More Powerful Than Goku or Vegeta
Dragon Ball Super (Credit: Akira Toriyama)

Instead, GT wasted too much time trying to copy the original and failing. Kid Goku got a lot of character development and ruined relationships – no more marriage with the much older Chi-Chi or rivalry with Vegeta.

This actually could have been interesting to explore – younger Goku leaves Earth defenseless, giving the proud Vegeta a chance to take over. But it dragged on for too long.

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Dragon Ball Super: Super Heroes (Credit: Akira Toriyama)

If GT had just fixed Goku and then combined the powers of DB and DBZ to create something new, it would have succeeded on its own merits. Not just a bad imitation of the past.

Dragon Ball Super's recent surge in popularity shows that there was room for expansion if GT had dared to push the boundaries beyond retreading old ground.

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Dragon Ball Super (Credit: Akira Toriyama)

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